One of the mistakes that many small and local business owners make when they set out to create a digital marketing campaign, is that they spread themselves too thin. What we mean by that is that, instead of focussing on one or two digital marketing tactics, they try just about everything. Apart from it being a nightmare to manage 10 or more different marketing channels, it also means your resources can be stretched to the limit, including your time and your budget.
For a digital marketing campaign to be successful, it requires careful planning, including setting its goals, research, such as spying on your competitors’ campaigns, implementation, and most importantly tracking and analysis to see what is working and what is not. If you attempt to do all of these but multiply them by 10 or more different marketing methods, you are almost certain to fail.
Instead of taking a scattergun approach, you need to focus your marketing efforts on one or two methods to start with, optimise them, and then think about moving on to others. For a start, your stress levels will be much lower, and just as important, the chances of your campaigns being successful are increased enormously. As for what online marketing avenues you should go down first, here are 5 which we highly recommend for small and local businesses.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Often cited as the holy grail in digital advertising, SEO is one of the most effective ways for a business to get traffic to its website from Google and other search engines. However, it is not something that can be done in days or even weeks, so a degree of patience is required. It is also complex and has a steep learning curve, so unless you are already an SEO expert, it is highly advisable that if you want to use SEO, that you employ a professional SEO agency.
We are fairly certain that we will be waxing lyrical about the benefits of email marketing to the end of time because few other digital marketing channels provide the number of benefits that email can. itis It is expensive, can be adapted to whatever business niche you are in, allows you to build relationships with prospects and customers, and whenever you have a new promotion, you can email them about it. Email data is also easy to analyse so you can constantly improve its results.
We are referring specifically here to pay per click (PPC) advertising, with two of the best options being Google Ads and Facebook Ads, although there are many alternatives. Whilst it does require an advertising budget, you are always in complete control of it and can spend as much or little as you which each day. PPC advertising can bring you traffic within hours which is ideal for those who want a quick return on their investment.
Social Media Optimisation
Social media might not be the only marketing channel a small or local business uses, but it certainly can be a highly effective complementary marketing tool to support others. Social media done correctly can build you a considerable audience online, build your authority and branding, plus, if you can get your social media followers into the habit of sharing the content that you publish, then you will start to receive traffic from sources throughout the internet.
Coupon Deal Sites
Every consumer loves a great deal, and one of the most effective ways of tapping into that is to use coupon sites to promote your business online. By offering discounts and special deals on sites like Groupon, you can generate prospects and customers on the back of their huge online presence and marketing budget. This is especially effective for local businesses with high lifetime customer values and who gain repeat customers.